Pattern Making: To learn or not to learn?

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Outsourcing pattern-making and sewing in your fashion business can be a game-changer. Whether you have a background in design or not, working with professionals who have expertise in these areas can save you time, money, and potential mistakes. In this blog post, we’ll discuss the importance of outsourcing pattern making and sewing in your fashion business, as well as understanding other technical aspects for successful outsourcing. By collaborating with experts in the field, you can ensure that your designs are brought to life in the best possible way and free up your energy for other important aspects of running your fashion business.


When starting a fashion brand, it’s important to evaluate your passion and expertise in pattern making and sewing. If you studied fashion design and enjoy bringing your designs to life through pattern making, that’s fantastic. It can allow you to create unique and conceptual designs that are sometimes difficult to translate onto paper. Having said that, knowledge of patternmaking can sometimes be a hindrance. Sometimes knowing pattern-making can limit your creative potential, by simplifying your designs in anticipation of the patterning stage. Additionally, many fashion entrepreneurs who attempt to pattern-make and sew their own designs often end up with garments that lack a polished finish. 


If you don’t have a background in pattern making and sewing, it is more beneficial to work with professionals who have the expertise and experience to create beautifully fitting garments and navigate the production process seamlessly. There are small details and nuances that come with experience and making countless garments. Professionals have the knowledge and eye for detail to ensure that your garments look high-quality and meet the price point you’re aiming for. 


It’s all about finding the right balance between your skills and the resources available to you. As a business owner, you have numerous responsibilities like designing, production management, marketing, and customer communication. Taking on the task of pattern-making and sample-making can sometimes distract you from these vital roles. By outsourcing these tasks, you can focus on growing your business and leave the technical work to the professionals. 



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When it comes to outsourcing elements of your fashion production, such as patternmaking, working alongside professionals who understand industry standards is crucial. An industry-experienced pattern maker has spent years honing their skills to effectively translate designs into patterns that look professional, are gradable and ready for production.
Many designers who outsource their pattern-making to home sewers or independent pattern makers often receive pattern pieces that aren’t to industry standard and with little to no information, which can be frustrating, costly and time-consuming. 


Leaving the patternmaking to the professionals not only allows you to come up with unique and beautiful designs but also ensures that your designs are effectively communicated to manufacturers. Pattern-making is not the only technical aspect to consider when outsourcing your fashion production. Understanding other aspects such as grading and production requirements is equally crucial. Manufacturers need the right tools and information to do the job efficiently and accurately. 


Without the necessary knowledge, you may provide inadequate information to your production partners, leading to delays, mistakes, and frustration on both sides. It is your responsibility as a designer and business owner to learn which skills to tackle yourself and which to outsource. By investing in the right production partners, you can ensure a smooth and successful production process, ultimately helping your business grow.


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